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Press Release

Memphis Man has Pleaded Guilty to Conspiracy to Distribute Heroin Resulting in Fatal Overdose

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Tennessee

Memphis, TN – David Mitchell Murray of Memphis has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute heroin resulting in death. Also indicted as a co-defendant in this case is Glenda Aldape, 48, of Cordova. D. Michael Dunavant, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee announced the guilty plea and indictment today.

According to information presented in court, on the evening of March 28, 2016, the victim, Sean Heywood agreed over the phone to buy half a gram of heroin from Aldape for $75. Aldape texted Sean that she was sending "Mitch" (later identified as 38-year-old David Mitchell Murray) to deliver the heroin. Sean lived with his father, mother and grandmother at the time.

At 10 p.m., Sean told his father he was going to a nearby Huey’s location to have a beer. Surveillance tape showed Sean entering the bar area of the restaurant a few minutes after 10 p.m. and having one beer. During this period, he spoke on the phone with Mitch at least twice. The tape then shows him leaving the restaurant. After a few minutes, he left the bar and got into a car with Mitch, who then sold the heroin to Sean. Mitch then drove Sean home.

At approximately 12:30 p.m., Sean’s father found Sean unresponsive on the bathroom floor. Memphis emergency personnel arrived at the house and pronounced Sean dead at 1:02 a.m. Law enforcement also responded and tagged all of the items as evidence – a plastic bag of heroin in his pocket, syringe, spoon and 0.19 grams of heroin, and Sean’s cell phone. The autopsy results concluded the cause of Sean’s death was a lethal dose of heroin.

U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, "Under our district-specific opioid strategy, heroin distribution cases resulting in death receive top priority for investigation and federal prosecution, regardless of quantity of heroin involved or the prior criminal record

of the offender. Our Heroin Initiative also provides time-sensitive case coordination between law enforcement agencies and medical examiners, to ensure that opioid overdose death cases are investigated quickly and thoroughly to identify the nature and source of the drug distribution. Finally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office will aggressively prosecute and seek the maximum guidelines sentences in these cases in order to disrupt trafficking organizations, hold the distributor accountable for the death of the victim, and to deter others from selling poison to our citizens."

Sentencing is set for November 2, 2018, before U.S. District Judge John T. Fowlkes Jr. Mitchell faces a minimum of 20 years up to life imprisonment.

This case was investigated the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Memphis Police Department Organized Crime Unit (OCU).

Assistant U.S. Attorney J. William Crow is prosecuting this case on the government’s behalf.

Updated August 24, 2018